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Chamber hosts former Husky coach
ARLINGTON Former Husky football coach, Jim Lambright currently works as a different kind of coach. While he is still in team building, his current focus on leadership reaches off the ball field into the corporate world, and he will be sharing his ideas with the membership of the Arlington-Smokey Point Chamber of Commerce at its Sept. 11 monthly meeting.
I believe that treating people the way they want to be treated can produce a very positive effect on organizations, Lambright told The Arlington Times recently.
After studying sociology, psychology and speech and coaching football for 30 years, Jim Lambright feels he has a pretty good handle on team building.
In the latest manifestation of his long career, Lambright is freelancing his motivational skills through the Pacific Institute to motivate people and help management of large corporations to develop good relationships with their people.
I was working for the contracting firm, Turner Construction, that built the Seahawks stadium and the new Yankee stadium, Lambright said.
A former resident of the Seven Lakes area in north Snohomish County, Lambright is also the founder of the Jim Lambright Niemann-Pick Foundation. His two sons, Brad and Bart, suffer from that disease.
Lambright named UPS as one of the best examples in the corporate world of how to best do business.
They wear brown and let the drivers stay on their favorite routes for years. Those drivers build strong relationships with their clients, Lambright said.
Lambright believes the key to success in managing people is to treat them the way they want to be treated. He plans to share that concept with the local business community on request from his friend, Becky Foster, a director of the chamber.
Foster said she first met the Lambrights at a Smokey Point Chamber meeting many years ago.
They were remodeling their house on fire trail. We had so much in common and really clicked, Foster said.
Since then, Foster helped the Lambrights in their effort to establish the Nieman-Pick Foundation, and they continue to work together on that project. Foster believes her friend has an important message to share with the north Snohomish County business community.
He is a positive thinker and knows how to assemble and manage a team. Jims contribution to the chamber will be measured in how well we take advice on how to motivate our employees. Foster said, and suggested it would be good to have Lambright lead a longer seminar with a charge for admission.
He gets a nice price for his time. We are lucky to have him in our chamber family. I think we all can learn a lot from him, Foster said.
Bruce and I attended the ceremony when Jim was inducted to the Husky Hall of Fame last year. It was so gratifying to see Jim get three standing ovations. I believe we now know that the UW made a very bad decision, Foster added.
Since the north county chamber community has last seen Lambright, he and his wife have been through another ordeal, both facing bladder cancer.
Were the only couple in the United States to share that disease, he said, adding that when they rolled him into surgery, it was understood that he might not come out alive. The same for his wife.
It definitely gives me a sense of urgency to do as much as I can. I am now more interested in making the hard decisions and addressing the big things, Lambright said.
We definitely looked at the water we were drinking and at the food we were eating, he said, adding they are now both free of cancer.
Lambright started coaching the Huskies Aug. 22, 1993, just two weeks before the season opener against Stanford. In 1999, he was fired, due to the lack of a winning team.
No matter how big the organization, communication has to reach effectively through all levels, Lambright said. Its also about effective management of ones own time, to keep ones own muscles working to that youll have more chance to influence people. Its just like being a teacher again. Or working with an 18-year-old football player. You have to communicate what you expect them to do or you cant expect them to do it.
Lambright also said that management needs to read the signs and overcome the ego.
Its not nuclear physics. If people start leaving, you have to wonder why. Its all about getting the person at the top to speak to the person at the bottom.
Lambright concedes in his typical modest way, In my life, Ive not gone far I grew up in Everett, moved to Fife to teach school, then north to Seven Lakes, and to Goldbar.
Chamber management is excited to have him speaking at the next meeting.
Another director, Barbara Tolbert, is thrilled that she is one of the winners of the raffle that selected a group of seven to sit with Lambright at the head table.
What I really liked when Jim spoke to the chamber before was his ability to motivate. But more than that, I am impressed with all of the charitable work that he does. I think its good for the business community to hear about someones efforts for good causes, Tolbert said.